Sunday, July 23, 2017

Despicably Apeing Spacemen

I've been struggling again lately. I think one of the symptoms of that is when I don't put much here.

There's usually two reasons for that - busy is one ! And then I catch up later with what I've been up to. Or it's the other kind of busy where I've been putting everything into work with not energy much left over for later. It's been like that lately and work isn't something I'll be talking about here.

The other reason for not posting much is that old bugbear of the depressive cycles ... I've been in one of those lately. Depression is especially tough because it alters your mental perception of what's going on. It makes you doubt, it makes you look to negative explanations for things.

One reason my depression is kicking at the moment is the wreckage that is my feet ... Yep. Still lots of damage, not really helped by me attempting to clean up the bad bits. The trouble is that if I'm slightly too aggressive about cleaning up the damage, I cause more damage. It really needs time to heal up on its own, which means not attacking the damage.

And I'll be giving it chance to do that with a week off in a fortnight. At least it's currently planned to be in a fortnight. I am in two minds about wasting a week's worth of being able to park ... Which is silly because I need that rest and recuperation and healing time more than I need to park. My knees have actually recovered over this week, they were a wreck as well this time last week.

Another reason why depression is hard is that it's very hard to lift yourself out of it. I depend on friends to help out. The camaraderie that I see in chat on streams helps up to a point but it's nowhere near as effective as people talking to you, boosting your confidence with that reassurance of "Yes, you really do know what you're talking about even if you don't believe it yourself."

I know two (actually 3 !) ladies at work who help me out a lot with giving me confidence that I am actually a quality engineer who is equal to and better to a lot of my peers. They're actually surprised that I'm not higher up in the hierarchy (which is something I'm working on).

And there is one very special lady who makes me think I'm worth knowing socially as well. She gives good hugs.

As one example, I've watched Despicable Me 3 twice over the last week or so. Once, with the Work-Ish mob. Didn't enjoy it very much that time, the depression was in charge and colouring my perceptions of an actually quite funny film (even if it is a formula that's now gone on too long). Yep. Came out under a thundercloud metaphorically as well as literally. On Tuesday though, I go see Despicable Me 3 with Cupid's Gift, CG's sister and another friend. Really enjoyed it. Seeing the little lovely broke that depressive cycle and while it didn't get me all the way back to Happy Sleepy, it got me able to enjoy things again.

Talking to people helps out a huge amount. That's my plea - if you have a friend who is struggling and needs to talk, be a listener. Make time for your friends when they are struggling and they will hopefully return that favour when you're struggling.

And we all struggle at some point in our life. Life is tough. But fun if you're around the right people.

Game time !
I haven't been in Elite actually that much but I have been enjoying my time back in there since resetting the save. That's the latest ship in the fleet, the ICV Lisa Kelly. It's a Type 6 space truck and it's named after one of the more charming of the Ice Road Truckers. There are 3 more space trucks and I think the names for those will be ICV Art Burke for the Keelback (a more fighty oriented truck and trucker), ICV Alex Dewey for the Type 7 (a mix of Alex Dopogorski and Todd Dewey) and the Type 9 super freighter will be ICV Darrell Ward, after an Ice Road Trucker who lost his life in a plane accident after the last series.

Here's the fleet so far :
In the previous save, I would usually sell the ships after upgrading to the next. This time around, I will attempt to collect all of the ships. There are quite a few .... So far, I have the Sidewinder, Hauler, Adder, the two Cobra types and the Type 6 space truck. After the latest community goal finishes, I'll have more than enough to get an Asp Explorer multirole ship (Discovery) which I will continue to use for a rather long time ...

So that's 6 down so far, 1 more coming imminently and after that, 25 more to collect. I could afford a few of the cheaper ones quite quickly although it would be a shame to buy and then not use them at all. It'll be a while before I want any of the more fighty ships though.

It's not all Elite though, I've been enjoying playing Halcyon 6 although from what I hear, that's not one you really want to play into its end game. Another I have trouble playing into its end game is Stellaris ... which has been back in the playlist today. I have another hive race which is aiming to eat the galaxy. Although not quite in the same way as before ... This time, I'm looking to have super clever people with robots doing the donkey work with mineral collection. I haven't used robots much before.

I've been in the Motorsport Manager again, although that's a little frustrating as my team isn't catching up to the lead teams as quickly as I'd like. They're still 2 to 2.5 seconds a lap behind. But I still got them a win this year taking advantage of the AI teams making really bad decisions in wet conditions.

Need to read more though. I've been just after the first prologue chapter of an Alastair Reynolds novel for a while now. I just don't feel much like reading at the moment !


Two more weeks at work, then chill out properly for a week. I've arranged it to coincide with cricket on the telly :-).

And that's the last thing to mention actually ! I really enjoyed keeping an eye on the Women's World Cup cricket final today with England playing India. I had Stellaris on at the same time but my attention was steadily diverting over to a cricket game that was steadily getting more and more tense to the finish.

Would England hold on in the field and defend a low total ?
Would India's batting depth see them home ?
Would the rain win with showers starting again at the end ?

In the end, it was an excellent win by England with it being great to see one of my old celebrations on screen again with Anya Shrubsole taking 6 wickets to give England the win with arms aloft, aeroplane style, for almost every wicket.

Great to see.

PS Apeing ? Almost forgot. Watched War for the Planet Of The Apes on Wednesday ... a pretty good film, quite dark though. Not an entertainment film but a good one to continue the story of that series. Recommended if you're a fan of the Planet of the Apes remakes.

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